KOURENTA - DOUSKARA REGION/CHRISTIAN MONUMENTS
- St. Paraskevi Verenikis Monastery :
In a height of Hionistra, above the village of the same name, a low stone enclosure protectively encloses the area of the congregation of the formerly thriving St. Paraskevi monastery, with 3000 goats and plentiful milk which was transported by a special pipeline. Built in 1750 in the place of the old monastery that was destroyed by Osman Pasha of Ioannina in the time of the uprising of Dionysos the Philosopher in 1611, it is a single isle basilica, without hagiographies and the sole treasure of an icon of 1879, the work of Georgios Nicholaou from Dragomi Paramythias. It celebrates on the 26 July.
*architecture, monastery, economy
- St. Paraskevi Trazanitissas Monastery:
On a small hill, with Kalamas river flowing around it, at the confluence with the branch Lagavitsa river, west of Vrosyna, is a cross-roofed basilica. It has an exterior length of 12.50 metres, a width of 5 metres, and a tile roof. According to some researchers it constitutes the remains of the Trazanitissa monastery, the dependency of the nearby Raidiotissa monastery. It was built in 1607, in other words, the same year as St. George in Vrosyna. There are few frescoes: Pantokrator, Platytera with 5 Hierarchs on the Pulpit and St. Paraskevi on the southern wall, to the right of the iconostasis. The icons of the iconostasis are the works of Anastasios Tsepelovitis (1832). A narrow carriagable dirt track starting at Vrosyna, passing by the old bridge of Kalamas, following its left bank, leads to this beautiful church which the state has designated a listed building. It is a charming trip with a panoramic view. You may get there on foot on a path (30 walking distance). It celebrates on 26 July.
*architecture, monastery, hagiography, landscape of natural beauty, listed monument
- Assumption of the Virgin, Panayia Raidiotissa Monastery:
A quarter of an hour on foot from Vrosyna, is the Panayia Raidiotissa monastery. Some 5 deserted cells built on the edge of the steep bank of the Zalogitiko river and the ruins of a water mill bear witness of the formerly rich monastery with the large flocks, wines and farm land. A stone stairway with 39 steps leads to the area of the congregation which is wisely built in a large rock (raidi) which protects it from landslides and earthquakes. The southern side and part of the northwestern side are covered by a well-built stone construction, while the interior, which barely fits 20 standing people, is covered with frescoes of exceptional artfulness. The monastery was built in 1631 (according to some sources in 1628) and renovated in 1829 by the abbot Nikodimos and Georgios Mantzos (inscription on the woodcut iconostasis of the area of the congregation). It celebrates on 15 August and is a listed monument.
*architecture, monastery, hagiographies, economy, listed building
- Gribovo Monastery:
Shortly after the turning to Polydoro and the bridge of the Tyrias river, 100 m from the Ioannina Igoumenitsa national road, at a height with very dense vegetation, is located the Assumption of the Virgin monastery, the old area of the congregation of the Gribovo monastery whose stores and abbacy were destroyed in the Second World War by the occupation forces. A basilica with two single isle spaces, one lower than the other, and a dome, it was built in 1764 and its hagiography was completed in 1774 by the painter of Kapesovo Ioannis on the ruins of the older monastery which was destroyed at the time of the uprising of 1611. Until 1918 it had much farm land live-stock and beehives and supported the school of Gribovo at the time of Turkish occupation. It is a listed monument and celebrates on 8 September.
*architecture, monastery, church, hagiographies, economy, history
- Assumption of the Virgin Monastery of Granitsa:
An iconostasis of 1973 on the road of Polydoro Granitsa shortly before the village indicates the presence of the small church which formerly belonged to the powerful Panayia of Granitsa monastery which had many goats and plentiful milk. A single isle basilica, with a pronaos, a main church and Pulpit, we dont know when it was built, on the place of the church that was destroyed in time of the events of 1611. The hagiographies of 1860 have a humble simplicity and freshness. It is a listed monument.
*architecture, monastery, hagiography, history, economy
- John the Baptist Monastery of Dovla:
Hidden from view in the densely vegetated and steep right bank of the Zalogitiko river, below Radovizi, the monastery of John the Baptist was built in 1801. Only the small area of the congregation is preserved, with the despotic icons of 1834, the work of the painter of TselepovoAnastasios Anagnostis. Its cells are in a ruined condition. You may visit it via a downhill, narrow and ruined dirt track starting from Radovizi (the time of the trip to the monastery and back is 1 hour).
*architecture, monastery, hagiography
- The Virgin of Kerasovo (Kerasias) Monastery:
In the small neighbourhood of Doneika of Kerasea, is the area of the congregation of the old Zoodohou Pigis Monastery. The old monastery was built, according to researchers, in 1592, and was the dependency of the Dihouniou Monastery. In 1611 it was destroyed by Osman Pasha of Ioannina following the failure of the uprising of Dionysios the Philosopher (he was a monk at Dihouni). The present day church was built in 1650. The monastery had a lot of property consisting of goats and sheep and winter quarters at the Stani tou Kalogerou location, and supported the school of Kerasea at the time of Turkish occupation.
*architecture, church, monastery, economy, history
- Angelomahou Monastery at Kourenta:
Hidden from view in a small ravine, on the right of the road from Kourenta to Giourganista (15 walking distance down hill), is the area of the congregation of the formerly thriving Angelomahou monastery which until 1912 maintained the secondary school of Kourenta. It was founded in 1779 by the abbot Grigorios and was decorated in 1810 by the painters of Kerkyra Theodoros and Stamatios. It is a basilica with a cross-shaped roof and a dome. It has excellent proportions. Its old wooden door has been well preserved. The interior from the Pulpit to the womens area is decorated. It celebrates on 15 August.
*architecture, monastery, church, history, economy
- St. Dimitrios Monastery of Dihouni (Radovizi):
On the left bank of a branch of the Tyrias river, right below the road linking Radovizi with Seniko, the Dihounio monastery is linked with distressing historical events. At this location in 1611 the revolution led by Dionysios the Philosopher began. With a thousand farmers with farming implements as weapons on 11 September they entered Ioannina seeking to capture the town. The uprising was brutally put down. Its leader was skinned alive and the consequences for the residents of Ioannina and the Kourenta Douskara region were fatal. They lost all the privileges they had acquired at time of the Ottoman conquest of 1430. The region we present lost its autonomy and was turned into the farm land of beys from Thesprotia and all its churches and monasteries were destroyed. Some 150 years after the disaster the monastery, which had many dependencies and a lot of property was rebuilt. In the present its area of the congregation is preserved a single isle basilica with a dome (1763), hagiographies of the same period, an abbacy (dilapidated), a guest house, a store house, a small ground floor building and a modern bellfry. It is dedicated to St. Dimitrios and celebrates on 26 October.
*architecture, hagiography, history, economy
- St. Kyriaki of Polydoro Monastery:
A wide uphill path starts at Polydoro, reaches a height with a superb view at Mourgana and goes down hill to the old monastery of St. Kyriaki. The only part of the monastery preserved in our day is the area of the congregation. The trip lasts an hour there and back, it is worth it for the elegant tile roofed church as well as the beautiful landscape with the running water and unique view.
The monastery was a dependency of the Dihouniou Monastery. It was destroyed at the time of the events of 1611 and rebuilt in 1789 by the monk Parthenios.
*architecture, monastery, church, view